Stephanie + Chris : What Happens When a Woodworker + Metalsmith Marry


This past weekend I had the incredible honor of being a part of such an amazing wedding! But first, let me back up to the beginning. A couple of months ago, I got a call from a curly-haired bride-to-be who was having trouble finding the right person to tame her mane for her big day. We set up a trial, and I was so excited to get my hands in her curly head because I ADORE working with curly hair. We chatted a bunch about life, love, and business during the trial, and I came to find out that Stephanie is an AMAZING metalsmith and jeweler here in Asheville. We talked about how her and her fiancé, Chris, met, and how they shared a passion for creating amazing things. Chris is a woodworker, and built her a custom jewelers bench where he hid her engagement ring–a stunning vintage piece she had fallen in love with a year prior, and thought had sold to a couple out in Charlotte. She told me about their plans integrate their respective crafts into their ceremony and MAKE their bands as part of it, I almost died.

Over the last two months, Stephanie and I just kind of clicked, and on our final chat about her wedding day timeline, she invited me to stay for celebration. I really tried to keep my cool, but I was so so so excited to get to WITNESS not only Stephanie and Chris’s union, but also this amazing, spectacular ring making ceremony.

Before I get to that though, I want to take a moment to highlight some of the other amazing details that made up this glorious day.

Florals by Jocelyn at Lavendar Fox Florals

Jocelyn is amazing. I met her back in the spring on one of my first shoots here in Asheville. She made these incredible live succulent jewelry pieces for the shoot, and I have been obsessed with everything she does ever since. When Stephanie and I chatted the week of her wedding, and she told me her original florist had flaked but she was able to secure Jocelyn, and I knew she was in great hands.

Stephanie requested that she wanted “moody” vibes, so Jocelyn went to work creating the most beautiful bouquet filled with dark amnesia roses mixed with pops of pastels, lights pinks, and high contrast whites. She chose chocolate cosmos, which are the darkest flowers in the bouquet to kind of “dance” around and add movement within the arrangement. My favorite detail however, was the giant and stunning king protea which not only tied together all of the light and dark tones, but also matched, in the most beautiful way, the hand dyed velvet ribbon that was used around the base of the bouquet. This arrangement was just show stopping.

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Gown by Hayley Paige from Wildflower Bridal

Stephanie’s bridal fashion was so beautifully authentic. She had a gorgeous and romantic Hayley Paige gown which we purchased at Wildflower Bridal here in Asheville. She paired her gown with a chunky pearl necklace and victorian lace up boots for the most romantic feel. To complete the look, I really wanted to keep with the romantic vibe and highlight her natural curls by doing a chunky topsy fishtail “braid” with loose face framing curling, and a soft smoky eye with bronze and wine tones.

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And now, what you’ve all been waiting for, The Rings!

I want to share the excerpt from Steph and Chris’s ceremony to explain how this magical union of a woodworker and metalsmith lead to the creation of their wedding bands.

“The process will involve melting silver down with an acetylene torch and pouring it from a small crucible into wooden molds carved from Juniper. The rough castings will be cooled, removed from the form, and hammered to size. In many diverse cultures, Juniper has historically symbolized protection, purity, cleansing, and youthful spiritual energy. This particular wood was harvested from Stephanie’s residence when the couple met.

This process is experimental. Like any craftwork, like a marriage, like any human relationship, it will be imperfect. It may take a sustained attempt. But with some skill, a bit of patience, and a little luck, they will forge their own hand-hewn symbols of their love and life together.”

Rereading this now, I have chills. This was such a powerful explanation of what we were about to witness. Then they told us not to stare directly into the light, they put on their safety glasses, lit the torch, and made some magic!

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Witnessing this creation of skill and love was truly one of the most awesome and unique experiences I have ever had, and I am so honored that I had the opportunity to be a part of this truly magical day!

Thank you so much to Folk and Wayfarer for these awesome images! Check the slideshow below to see some more beautiful shots from Stephanie and Chris’s wedding day, and let me know in the comments below what the most unique ceremony experience you’ve witnessed was!